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A Sisterhood of Secret Ambitions by Sheena Boekweg

“Set in an alternate 1920’s America, A Sisterhood of Secret Ambitions is one of sisterhood, friendship, and how women can reshape the world one word at a time.”

Cecelia Beckman, Sheaf & Ink

The Story:

From the publisher

Behind every powerful man is a trained woman, and behind every trained woman is the Society. It started with tea parties and matchmaking, but is now a countrywide secret. Gossips pass messages in recipes, Spinsters train to fight, and women work together to grant safety to abused women and children. The Society is more than oathsβ€”it is sisterhood and purpose.

In 1926, seventeen-year-old Elsie is dropped off in a new city with four other teenage girls. All of them have trained together since childhood to become the Wife of a powerful man. But when they learn that their next target is earmarked to become President, their mission becomes more than just an assignment; this is a chance at the most powerful position in the Society. All they have to do is make one man fall in love with them first.

My Review: A Sisterhood of Secret Ambitions

What I absolutely LOVED (yep, all caps) about this book are the following:

  • The Cover 😍
  • The Title πŸ‘
  • The casual queer representation πŸ³οΈβ€πŸŒˆ
  • The body positivity ✊🏽
  • The idea of the book πŸ‘πŸ½

Let me touch on the last idea first.

I really like the idea of this novel.

These brave, bold, and beautiful young women who are part of this secret society in an alternate 1920’s America. Trying to shape the world for a better future. And Boekweg goes into a little depth of the society itself, how there are titles for every part of the organization. Where our main character falls into the Wives-to-be.

My frustration with the novel mainly had to do with the main character and the plot. Elsie doesn’t seem like a very likable character. She’s rather selfish throughout the novel. She and her friends receive a mission. Each young woman will compete to win the heart of a man who may become president. And throughout the competition, she constantly undermines all the other Wives-to-be (and even acknowledges she’s doing it, but won’t stop).

I’m going to pause there.

How they know an eighteen-year-old will be a future president isn’t explained. We’re supposed to suspend our disbelief and believe that this particular person is going to be the next president. I couldn’t buy into it though regardless of this being an alternate reality. Because an eighteen year old becoming president just seems so unlikely. And Boekweg never mentions when Andrew, the bachelor everyone has dibs on, will actually become president.

A Few Last Thoughts

Overall the idea of the main thread of the story and diverse representation is good. It’s the execution of the plot that didn’t work for me. There were too many long drawn out scenes of unnecessary dialogue. Subplots that didn’t make sense. And a relationship between the MC and a side character that left me confused and annoyed.

A Sisterhood of Secret Ambitions has a great deal of potential, and though this one wasn’t for me, it’s still a novel to check out if you enjoy historical fiction.

Happy Reading Μ΄ Cece

RATING: ink blotink blot – Adequately Inked


Publication Details

  • Publication day: June, 2021
  • Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
  • ISBN: 978-1250770981
  • Pages: 352
  • Age Group: 13+
  • Paperback: $18.99
  • Get A Copy⬇️

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